How to Vote Safely in the Face of MAGA Voter Intimidation
On Sunday, November 1st, 2020, the presidency of Republican Donald Trump reached yet a new, horrifying low –– he defended his supporters who attempted violence on his political rival, Vice President Joe Biden. A caravan of MAGA cultists tried to run Biden’s campaign bus off the road.
Trump’s grave sin came, of course, in the form of a tweet:
It’s worth mentioning that a day earlier Trump tweeted a sardonic “I LOVE TEXAS” while posting a video that shows a crime clearly being committed. The FBI is now looking into this, but this entire ordeal underscores a shocking new reality…when you go to the polls tomorrow, November 3rd, 2020, you could likely be threatened by Trump supporters into leaving the polls.
Call them “poll watchers,” as Republicans have declared. Call them “activists.” Call them my own preferred moniker, “cultists.” But whatever the nomenclature, people in red hats with loud, un-masked mouths are going to get in your face as you walk to your polling place. And they’re going to be spewing more than COVID-19. They are there to make you feel like you cannot vote safely.
They are there to take away your power.
It boggles my mind that we’ve reached an era of literal voter intimidation, but here we are. So what do we do in the face of such extremism? We do a gear up montage. We pump “Eye of the Tiger” and run up the proverbial stairs. We prepare.
Here’s a helpful list of ways to get to and from your polling place safely, despite MAGA extremists.
- Know your polling place.
Easiest tip on the list. Just go to Vote.org to find it.
Note that when I say “know,” I mean know… know the lay of the land ahead of time. Try to spot where you might run into the riffraff. And then avoid those areas. Plan ahead.
2. Wear red.
Yes, really. Anyone who goes so far as to literally show up to a polling place and forego the democratic process can be described in many ways but is, perhaps most succinctly, a pretty basic bitch.
The troglodytes at polling places hellbent on voter intimidation will unconsciously overlook you. “RED GOOD, BLUE BAD!” Bonus points if you have any form of red headwear.
3. Wear a mask.
I know…most MAGA cultists won’t be doing this. After all, they have been enjoying Trump superspreader events in droves, even after conservative icons like Herman Cain died on the altar of Trump. Wearing a mask could potentially be a dead giveaway…no pun intended.
However, there is a psychological advantage to wearing a mask… they won’t be able to see your face. They won’t be able to as easily identify you. And they won’t be able to see your frowns of disdain, which could lead a caveman or cavewoman to grab thier nearest club –– or, more likely, get in your face and spray you with spittle and pandemic juice.
And besides, to be clear, wearing a mask is in tune with my motivation for this list –– staying safe.
4. Arrive early and park nearby.
Preferably in the actual parking lot of your polling place. Also be aware you may get some screaming at your car/banging on your windows, and some MAGA cultists even claim to be taking down license plate numbers.
Yeah, they’re that fucking dumb. Ignore this.
5. Go with friends or family members.
Safety in numbers. Even if your friend has already voted and waits outside when you get to the actual polls.
While anyone proudly describing themselves as a Republican is likely already lost, bonus points if you can go with someone who describes themselves as “conservative.” Let them see what the Republican party has devolved into firsthand. Especially if they’re there to vote, too.
And I know it’s November and it’s chilly some places, but again, safety first… be sure to carpool with your windows rolled down.
6. Smile, smile, smile.
I feel dirty typing this because I’m sure Aaron Burr (sir) would love me for it.
But it’s true –– smiling can defuse tense situations. Even if they can’t see your mouth due to your mask, they’ll see it in your eyes.
Throw in a little wave at the mob, and they’ll presume you’re “one of them.”
7. Do NOT engage.
This is a big one. Like dark warlocks, they want to cast a spell of words in order to irk and, ultimately, provoke you.
They want to be “justified” in their actions. They want an excuse. They desperately want a fight.
Don’t give it to them. Proceed onward with the strength to do what is right.
8. Project confidence.
Walk tall, with your shoulders back and head held high. Despite them being akin to a pack of rabid wolves, make eye contact with those who approach you. Basically, do all of the things to not make yourself look like a victim.
9. If confronted, simply flee.
Again, don’t engage or argue, and certainly don’t physically fight if you don’t have to.
The most powerful way you are fighting is with your vote. This is what they are trying to steal from you.
Call out for help if you feel threatened. There will be police nearby.
If there isn’t, seriously, just run, and call the cops. Gtfo.
10. If you don’t have the luxury of fleeing…
Here’s a great video on self defense. Again, call out that you feel threatened. This video also features a nice one-two punch combo. I would add you should knee their tiny, likely bright-red ballsacks. Then RUN.
But seriously, just flee, please. Fight with your vote.
Take heart that this entire extreme situation confirms, without the shadow of a doubt, what everyone who’s not a MAGA cultist has known all along…
Donald Trump fears Joe Biden.
Fear is a powerful motivator. It has clearly motivated Trump into literally calling for voter intimidation and violence. He is backed into a corner, and he’s sunk to a new low.
You matter. Get to the polls and vote a motherfucker out.